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Beacon Reader

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Type of site
Crowdfunding / Journalism
Created byDan Fletcher, Dmitri Cherniak and Adrian Sanders[1]
Current statusoffline

Beacon or Beacon Reader was an independent web platform to fund journalism projects founded in 2013. It was based in Oakland, California. Hundreds of journalists used the platform to finance their writing and investigations. The organisers worked with newspaper publications to promote the projects, and to help the stories produced reach a wider audience. Beacon announced in an email on October 4, 2016 that they are no longer offering services for journalists or backers, and that on September 12, 2016 all active subscriptions were cancelled and no further contributions could be made.

As of 2015, over US$1,000,000 was raised via 20,000 donors to fund journalism. The site differed from existing models of funding journalism with donations, such as National Public Radio and Kickstarter by focusing on the journalist, providing publishing support, vetting and audience participation in story development. Failure for individual writers is high, however popular news outlets, e.g. The Huffington Post and The Texas Tribune, have been more successful in raising funds.[1]

Example projects[edit]


The partnership between Beacon and The Huffington Post was criticised for allowing a for-profit corporation seek and accept funding for donations that are usually reserved for non-profit entities. The fear is that it may be easier to crowdfund journalist salaries than expending corporate profits.[2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Blasey, Laura. "Beacon: A Journey in Crowdfunding Journalism". AJR. American Journalism Review. Retrieved 25 August 2016.
  2. ^ a b Adler, Ben (Nov–Dec 2014). "The case for Huffington Post's crowdfunded reporting job". Columbia Journalism Review. Retrieved 25 August 2016.
  3. ^ Ember, Sydney (19 March 2014). "A Website Asks Readers to Finance Independent Journalists". New York Times. Retrieved 25 August 2016.
  4. ^ "Knight Enterprise Featured Investments". Knight Foundation. Retrieved 25 August 2016.

External links[edit]